I Have A Say Thanks to My Mom and Dad!!!

Being the oldest of 11, I am so thankful, especially now, for my Mom and Dad saying "yes" to life! Growing up, we never had a ton of money. My Dad was a high school chemistry teacher and my parents decided from the beginning that they wanted to have one of them home with us. My mom gave up her teaching career, and raised me, followed by 10 others! My Mom also taught all 11 of us at home for part of our childhood before we would head off to Nativity Catholic Grade School. My Dad worked long hours, eventually earning other degrees so that he could first become dean, then principal, and finally, when I was a sophomore, he was named Roncalli High School's first president. My Dad and Mom both sacrificed SO MUCH for us.

I remember, even as a young person, getting stared at by people, and I remember the comments they would make. I can still hear a dental receptionist asking my Mom "Are these all yours? You know how children are made right?" followed by a real insidious but ditzy chuckle, followed by a secretarial gum crackle. My Mom and Dad were always tight budget wise, and I'm sure at times ached with a desire to not have to take bags of clothes from other families so that we could have clothes. I'm sure my Mom and Dad had desires to simply go to Nordstrom and buy us and give us all our own new clothes and Gameboys and Reebok Pumps etc. I'm sure they at times really wished they could just get a new car and not have to drive a fifteen passenger van around. I'm sure at times they wanted really badly to just go to a restaurant and sit back and enjoy a big expensive meal instead of having to cut coupons and craft together economic meals on the stove.

But they chose life for us, and they chose sacrifice for themselves.

I often think about that ditzy secretary now when our family gets together almost every weekend for dinner to laugh and hang out. Some of the siblings might be out of town or busy with other obligations, but inevitably, all weekend long, every weekend, our family gets together. Sometimes, when we're out at a restaraunt, I see the couples who are alone with each other. They hardly talk to each other and the loneliness is palpable. A part of me feels bad that we're having so much fun with our 8 tables shoved together, telling stories, laughing good hearty and healthy laughs. Sometimes I wonder if one of the couples sitting in the restaurant quietly and solemnly is that dental secretary - who now has piles of money and can eat wherever she wants, but doesn't have hardly anyone to share it with. My heart breaks for the people who are alone, especially the ones who are alone because, when they could have been having children, they instead bought into the contraception lie and lived for themselves only.

I have a say today, and so do my ten younger brothers and sisters, because my parents chose life. Mom and Dad - thanks a million!!!

Monday, March 12, 2012

Theresa Lawson, Mother of 11, Has a Say!

My husband and I are the parents of 11 beautiful children, and, now the grandparents of 12 (4 in heaven and two more due this summer). He is a farmer and I am a registered nurse.

We chose to use Natural Family Planning to space our children...and most of them are 2.5 to 3 years apart. And yes, we WANTED every one of them! We also have three little intercessors in heaven.

When we married, he wanted 5 children, and I wanted 6. We laugh at God's sense of humor...he got his 5 and I got my 6! When our 7th baby was conceived unexpectedly (others may call that baby a 'mistake' but God doesn't make mistakes!) my husband had a difficult time accepting the pregnancy. We lost that baby @ 5 months, and, when he looked at the little baby girl we had lost, he said God could give us as many babies as He wanted...and we would willingly take them all!!

My husband also chose to be the sole provider for our family, so I could stay home with our children. We have spent 24 years homeschooling our children...8 girls and 3 boys. They are all open to God's gift of life...this year alone we will have added 4 new grandchildren to the bunch. And, we have another daughter getting married in August, who, along with her fiance, are very open to God's gift of children...however, many God sends them!

We are so grateful for the many blessings Our Lord has showered upon our family. And yes, it has been a very sacrificial journey. Much of what you write about in your blog also pertained to our family. People used to leave bags of clothes on our front porch...it was like 'Christmas' when our children opened those bags! But, they never complained.

We live on a farm, and have had many animals over the years. The work involved in caring for those animals was a wonderful life experience for each of them...and taught them to be responsible for something other than themselves.

Truly, its been a good life!! And we are very blessed. And, yes, WE HAVE A SAY!! As Catholics, we are grateful that we didn't buy into the contraceptive mentality. If we had, we wouldn't have the countless blessings we are experiencing today. We have learned to trust God above all...for truly, He is in charge!

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